Grace Lightman @ The Islington

I first saw Grace Lightman at Bluedot festival, and immediately fell in love with her Kate Bush meets pet shop boys meets space rock vibe – I ordered the signed vinyl as soon as I got home, and Spotify keeps reminding me it’s one of my most played albums this year.

So when I was given the opportunity to photograph her show in London, I jumped at the chance. The question would be, in a more intimate venue without the smoke and lights would her performance still stand up? The answer is a resounding yes! Grace comes on stage, smiling broadly to a packed out venue. This is an artist that enjoys her craft, and it shows in the performance. 

Grace plays the striking figure of the Silver Eater, looking at humanity through the eyes of an alien being. At it’s most shallow it’s a fun, slightly eccentric pop record. Look a little deeper and you have an analysis of human culture and society, our quirks and idiosyncrasies. Our obsession with commercialism and our throw away culture. There are some parallels I could draw to Matt Haig’s novel The Humans, looking at what makes us human through the eyes of an outsider. 

Reminiscent of Bowie, Grace’s woozy vocals weave through the songs. Between songs Grace sounded slightly overwhelmed by the reception of the crowd, who like me have seen a deeper, maybe slightly darker meaning to the record underneath it’s sweet exterior. With the crowd singing back to songs such as Silver Eater and Repair Repair, this fueled her performance further, providing us with a standout performance.